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Baker, Halfway go on roll over Sharpsburg

July 10, 2007|By TRAVIS KING / Staff Correspondent

SHARPSBURG - Devin Baker likes to hit, but he loves to run.

Sharpsburg had a tough time stopping him from doing either.

Baker went 3-for-3 - falling a home run short of the cycle - and drove in two runs to help Halfway to a 6-4 losers' bracket victory that eliminated Sharpsburg from the Maryland District 1 11-12 All-Star Tournament.

Baker led off the game, hitting the third pitch he saw from Sharpsburg starter Josh Grim into the right-field gap for a triple and kept running to score on an errant throw in from the outfield for a quick 1-0 lead for Halfway.

"When the ball comes in, I just want to hit it and run. So when they started to overthrow each other, I knew I could just run and run until I had to stop," said Baker.

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Halfway made it 4-0 in the third inning, capitalizing on two more Sharpsburg errors.

Bobby Brennan led off with a single, took second on a wild pitch and scored when Zach Shoemaker's single rolled past the center fielder. After Aaron Green ripped an RBI single, Baker followed with a single that was enhanced by an errant throw, which scored Green while he took third.

"Strikeouts have always been our problem," said Halfway manager Warren Sauble. "I tell the kids that if you put the ball in the field, anything can happen."

"Throwing the ball around like we did killed us. We can't give them extra outs." said Sharpsburg manager Ernie Shoemaker. "You can't let your guard down for even an inning."

Jordan Miller scored Kyler Martin on a fielder's choice for Sharpsburg's first run in the fourth. Halfway answered in the bottom of the frame, using Baker's RBI double and Brendon Colliflower's RBI groundout to take a 6-1 lead.

Sharpsburg rallied with a three-run fifth inning to cut Halfway's lead to 6-4. With a runner on first, Grim was hit by an Austin Marquis pitch. Grim and Ernie Shoemaker Jr. then scored on J.T. Hutchinson's double. Hutchinson advanced to third and later scored on a wild pitch.

Nick Sauble, Halfway's third pitcher, closed the door on Sharpsburg in the sixth inning, striking out two of the last three hitters he faced to end the game.

Enfield and Martin had two hits each for Sharpsburg. Grim lasted 4 1/3 innings for Sharpsburg, giving up eight hits, walking one, and striking out six to reach his pitch limit. Only three of the six Halfway runs against him were earned.

"Grim pitched a great game ... He gives 110 percent. You couldn't ask for much more from him tonight," said Shoemaker.

Marquis, starting for Halfway, pitched 4 2/3 innings. He gave up four runs on six hits, walked three and struck out five.

Halfway travels to American today at 6 p.m. for a losers' bracket game.

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